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DUKE of Venice.
Desdemona, Daughter to Brabantio, and Wife to Othello.
Officers, Gentlemen, Meslengers, Musicians, and Attendants.
SCENE for the First AEt in Venice; during the
rest of the Play in Cyprus.
Tbe Story is taken from Cynthio's Novels. Pope.
Enter Rodorigo and lago.
That thou, Iago, who haft had my purse,
As if the strings were thine, shouldit know
lago. But you'll not hear me.
Rod. Thou told’ft me, thou didst hold
lago. Despise me if I do not.
And 1 Abhor me.
2 His own pride and purpose,
Moor of Venice. And what was he? Forsooth a great arithmetician, One Michael Casio, a Florentine, A fellow almost damn'd in a fair 3'phyz;l b That never fet a squadron in the field, Nor the division of a battle knows More than a spinster; but the bookish theorique, Wherein the tongued consuls can propose As masterly as he; meer prattle, without practice, Is all his soldiership he had the election; And I, of whom his eyes had seen the proof At Rhodes, at Cyprus, and on other grounds Christian and heathen, must be belee'd and calm'd By +'Debtor, and Creditor, this Counter-caster. He, in good time, must his lieutenant be, And I, God bless the mark! his Moor-ship's Ancient,
Rod. By heav'n, I rather would have been his hangman.
Iago. But there's no remedy, 'tis the curse of service; Preferment goes by letter and affection, And not by old gradation, where each second Stood heir to th' first. Now, Sir, be judge your self, If I in any just term am afsign'd ; To love the Moor.
Rod. I would not follow him then.
Iago. O Sir, content you ;
For (a) It is plain from many other pasages in the Play (rightly underfood) that Casio was a Fiorentine and lago a Venetian.
(5) In all the former editions this hath been printed a fair wife, but Jurely it muft from the beginning have been a mistake, because it apfears from a following part in the Play that Caffio was an unmarried man : on the other hand bis Beauty is often hinted at, which it is natural enough for otber rough faldiers to treat with fcorn and ridicule,
For nought but provender, and when old, 's cashier'd;
Rod. What a full fortune does the thick-lips owe,
Iago. Call up her father,
Rod. Here is her father's house, I'll call aloud.
lago. Do, with like timorous accent, and dire yell, As when, by night and negligence, s'a' fire Is spied in populous cities.
Rod. What, ho! Brabantio! Signior Brabantio! ho!
Iago. Awake! what, ho! Brabantio! ho! thieves ! thieves! Look to your house, your daughter, and your bags : Thieves ! thieves !
Enter Brabantio above, at a window.
Rad. Signior, is all your family within?
Bra. The worse welcome;
Rod. Sir, Sir, Sir,
Bra. But thou must needs be sure,
Bra. What tellst thou me of robbing? this is Venice : My house is not a grange.
Rod. Most grave Brabantio,
Iago. Sir, you are not one of those that will not serve God, if the devil bid you. Because we come to do you service,